Tag Archives: London

Prêt à Portea: The Berkeley Hotel

3 May

I was lucky enough to go for Afternoon Tea at The Berkeley Hotel this week! I felt absolutely spoiled even though we went for the Tea, Sandwiches and Scones option they gave us each a Prêt à Portea Goodie Bag!

tea pot and pret a porte a

jam

scones

chocolatesIt was absolutely delicious and I’d love to go back for the full Prêt à Portea; cakes inspired by the latest trends:

Image taken from The Berkeley Hotel Website

Image taken from The Berkeley Hotel Website

How amazing are they?! I got the green handbag in my goodie bag which I thought was too good to eat! Haha.

I’m a bit of a sucker for a good afternoon tea as most of you know, so let me know where your favourites and I’d love to try them myself.

Have a great Bank Holiday weekend 🙂

LDNshopaholic xxx

Nails: Dior at Harrods

4 Apr

Hello Shopaholics!

Those of you who read Vogue’s Beauty Page may have noticed their article on The Illustrated Nail. I had to share this as I thought the haute couture designs were clever yet classic (quite unusual when it comes to nail art which is generally cute or clashy!).

Nail Artist, Sophie Harris-Greenslade, who goes by the name of “The Illustrated Nail” has created the designs from Raf Simons’ Dior Spring/Summer 2013 collection.

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I absolutely love the simplicity of the designs which keeps them chic and stylish yet recognisable.

The cost of the appointment is redeemable against the purchase of two Dior products – so you can get your freshly polished fingers on some Dior goodies whether it’s fashion or beauty!

Appointments with Sophie herself are available every Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Dior at Harrods until April 14. Call 0207 754 0444 to book.

I’ll be making myself an appointment for this chic manicure:

nails-03_v_2apr13_b_592x888_1Inspired by:

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What’s your favourite nail and outfit combination?

Do let me know if you get yourself an Illustrated Nail manicure by dropping me a comment below, maybe I’ll see you there!

LDNshopaholic xxx

Shop: Cryptofloricon

13 Feb

Valentine’s Day is on our doorstep, and to be honest with you I’m not a huge fan of this commercial ‘holiday’ – you could call me a Valentine’s grinch!

However, when a colleague told me about a weekend pop up shop near Brick Lane with an unusual and quirky idea – my heart warmed a little bit!

Cryptofloricon is:

Inspired by traditional Victorian floriography, writer and artist Edward Saperia developed a series of over 200 “flower codes”, allowing you to express anything from a simple romantic gesture (“I adore you”) to a loaded question (“Someone else?”) or even an insult (“Creep!”) using nothing but a few common flowers.

On the beautifully designed website you can select your message… I chose “Let’s Pretend that never happened”(!)

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That then selects the correct flowers to convey the message. At Cryptofloricon the florist then encodes the message and hoists the encrypted bouquet to the customer:

flower shop quirky

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541485_414647908623011_1760982164_nWhen receiving such a bouquet you can return to the Cryptofloricon website and input the selection to reveal the message:

decode cryptofloriconDecoded: “By way of introduction”… Congratulations, Receiver, the Bearer of By way of introduction has been admiring you from afar, and wishes for the chance to become better acquainted. For Bearers, By way of introduction is an excellent method of approaching a Receiver hitherto unintroduced who has caught one’s attention; or of inviting a casual associate to further intimacy. Those wishing to convey enthusiastic assent can use a courteous Nice to meet youAbout time or Drink?. Strictly platonic intent can be signalled with Let’s be friends, whereas those intent on romance can use Kiss me, you fool! or How you doin’? to indicate the desire to take things further. Receivers unwilling to further acquaintance with the Bearer can repel their advances with a curt Creep or Big mistake , a firm You’re not my type or Never, a cutting You dent my calmGet over it or You should be so lucky, or a tactful It’s not you, it’s meThanks, but no thanks or Let’s pretend that never happened.

Being a bit of  language and literature buff, I absolutely love the use of language and humour in the descriptions.

The pop up shop on the weekend was a success, however the inventor of the concept is still on the lookout for the right florist to continue the project.

What do you think of this idea? I love how such conceptual shops pop up around our lovely city when they probably wouldn’t work elsewhere.

What have you got planned for Valentine’s day?

xxx

Photo credits to Marcus Tucker (taken from Cryptofloricon’s Facebook page)

Shop: Flowers at Birksen

29 Nov

Welcome to my new feature… independent shop of the week. I’m so excited about this as there are so many lovely little places around London and the UK! This week is Birksen in Clapham Old Town. Not only are they an amazing florist, they also sell vintage furniture and lovely homeware.

I stumbled upon Birksen whilst househunting around Clapham Common and fell in love! Can’t wait to visit again and buy something for my place when I find it (maybe the reindeer fairisle door stop!).Check them out when you’re next in the area, or even better go out of your way to see them whenever you can!

Have you got a favourite independent shop? Let me know, as I’d love to visit.

How to: Glamour Waves

9 Nov

I was lucky enough to be invited to the multi-award winning Brooks and Brooks salon for a little pampering session this week and thought I’d share the fabulous evening I had with you all with a how to blog post.

The Salon is on the lovely Sicilian Avenue (nearest tube Holborn), which had such beautiful Christmas lights!

I got to choose from a selection of on trend hair looks including vintage undo, sexy blowout, mussy relaxed updo and beachy waves:

I decided to try something a little bit different and chose the “glamour waves” look as I’ve never had anything like that before…. AND I’d never seen a curling tong like this one either….!

Sophia, my technician, and I had lots of giggles about this… and step one was to spray my roots with Batiste for brown hair for a bit of volume and then blow dry to really smooth out the length of my hair:

Then Sophia wrapped my hair around the tongs in sections and pinned it all up to cool (to prevent the curls from dropping)

Then she unpinned all my curls and I had some amazing ringlets!

I quite liked this girly look, but to make it all a bit sophisticated, she brushed the curls out and with her hairdressers magic made it look like this:

Outfit

Black Velvet Dress (worn as skirt): Primark

Black long sleeve top: ASOS

Studded Tiger Print Cardigan: Topshop

Spike Necklace: Primark

GameBoy iPhone Case: Play.com

I told Sophia that I usually curl my hair with my GHD’s and she said if I curled it all in the same direction and then brushed it out, it would create a similar look. Something I’ll definitely be trying out.

There were some seriously cute face cookies with amazing hairdos too!

I had such a fabulous time at Brooks & Brooks that I booked in to get my natural hair colour spiced up! I’m very excited about this, let me know if you have any suggestions about what kind of look you think I should go for.

Where do you get your hair done? What’s your favourite hair trend for Autumn/Winter 2012? I’d love to know,

LDNshopaholic xxx

Event: Night at the Museum

31 Oct

So on Friday night I had the pleasure of attending Lates at Natural History Museum. With no idea what to expect, I took the boyfriend along to see what it was all about. Firstly, we stopped off for dinner at the amazing Crémerie Crêperie which appears to be my favourite South Kensington eatery!

Then we hit the museum which is all ceremoniously lit up (not sure whether this is for Halloween or Christmas?):

Inside the famous Diplodocus Central hall was buzzing – there’s a bar and live music throughout the event:

We had a good old browse around the birds section and saw a whole lot of fossils too! Slightly more dated and a bit creepier was the insect area…. not for the faint hearted! And of course there’s the renowned Dinosaur gallery which really is quite incredible:

These sections of the museum were fairly quiet, but their current exhibition Wildlife Photographer of the Year was totally sold out. I’d definitely recommend it, there are some really impressive photos taken by both professionals and joe average (I’m going to try and enter next year!). Here are just a few of my favourites:

Also in attendance was The Campsite, a pop up creative arts area outside the museum with Campervans, caravans and tents. Here you can watch a Wildlife movie in Lionel the white Campervan or tell a Natural History related story in the Archivist van. (Popping up until November 2nd!).

What I Wore (ever so casual):

Grey Woolly Jumper – H&M

Leather Jacket –  Zara

Jeans – Topshop

Tartan Scarf – Car Boot Sale

Red Bobble Hat – Primark

Maroon Converse (not hi tops!) – Office

Grey Textured Shoulder Bag – All Saints

The next Lates at the Natural History Museum (and last of the series) will be taking place on 30th November. If you are looking for an unusual place to go on a date or after work drinks with colleagues/friends, this is ideal! It’s also open throughout the week for a more traditional museum visit, and my favourite festive ice rink opens there on Friday!

Have you been to any good exhibitions lately? I’m a bit of a geek when it comes to museums and galleries, and love them nearly as much as shopping!

LDNshopaholic xxx

Monki in LDN!

9 Mar

Yes it’s true! Monki has arrived on Carnaby Street, right next to sister brand Cheap Monday. I paid a visit on it’s opening day and was not let down one bit! The brand is definitely unique, and in store it felt very different to any current retailers in the UK. Originally from Sweden, Monki describe their stores as “walk-in closets filled with treasures! To step into one of them is to step into a part of the Monki World: the strange Forgotten Forest, the bio-hazardous City of Oil and Steel or the magical Sea of Scallops.”

A tad peculiar perhaps? But it seems to make them all the more lovable along with their Monki Monsters (as featured with me below!).

They do some great timeless pieces, I came across several knits which I could see becoming staples in my wardrobe:

Peace Knit (30 euros)

Tropez Cardigan (40 euros)

As well as having some seriously quirky accessories:

Watermelon Bag (20 euros)

Jane Hat (20 euros)

Check out their awesome descriptions which to me sell the product more than the picture: “Don’t be a plain Jane–if you want to stand out, just do it, wear it, be it. Jane brightens the day with a cocky little wink to everything from 80’s new wave to Mary Poppins charm. Soft felt, comes in two sizes. Colour: yummylicious red”

To clarify, online the prices are in Euros, but in the store they are in good old English pounds.

I’ll be featuring some more Monki pieces next week with the return of my Trendwatch Tuesday post so keep check back for more from this exciting brand!

Have you been to Monki yet? Or purchased anything from them before?

LDNshopaholic xxx

Event: Oxfam’s Rumble in the Jumble

24 Feb

Who doesn’t love a bargain? Out of my wardrobe it’s my charity shop finds that are my favourite; you get to help a good cause whilst giving a fabulous piece of clothing a new home!

So when I heard about Oxfam’s Rumble in the Jumble sale, I was stupidly excited… it’s happening this Sunday (26th February 2012) at St Pancras Old Church, Pancras Road, London NW1 1UL (nearest tube is Kings Cross) from 6pm-9pm, all in aid of Women’s Day.

It will cost you £2 and a bag (big or small) of jumble to attend and it’s supported by several fabulous celebrities including Dawn Porter, Cherry Healey, Sara Cox, Grace Woodward and more!

I’m really gutted as after finding out the date, I realised I’m actually away in Birmingham on Sunday, but I thought I’d encourage all you lovely people to go along and get yourself some gems whilst getting together with some fellow fashion lovers and do gooders. You can find more details on Dawn Porter’s lovely blog here.

Instead I’ll be aiming to put together my own Rumble in the Jumble in aid of Oxfam with friends, bloggers and whoever else would like to join?  Where everyone brings clothes they no longer wear and we have a big swap/sale and raise money for charity. If this is something you’d be interested in… tweet me, leave me a comment or e-mail me at LDNshopaholic@hotmail.co.uk

Would love to hear all about it from anyone who does attend!

LDNshopaholic xxx

Event: Pure London

12 Aug

So earlier this week I popped down to Pure London to discover what exactly it was all about. There was an incredible amount to see at London’s Olympia:

Essentially it’s a trade show where boutique brands present their wares, and buyers from shops and chains come along to have a look.

We were talked through the trends for S/S ’12, as buyers will be looking for next year’s stock at this point! The brands at Pure are aimed at an older clientele who look for less ‘directional’ (that’s less trendy to you and me) pieces so I felt it was a bit behind and same-y if I’m totally honest with you.

The typical spring/summer ladylike and nautical trends were mentioned:

     

Then the 70s’ trend, which is apparently sticking around, along with colour blocking:

      

The only trend on the Pure Catwalk which caught my eye was the Tribal Print:

I haven’t embraced this trend this Summer but after seeing it styled in such different ways I’m starting to think it’s quite doable without being over the top.

The show itself is a visual merchandiser’s dream, and realistically the most flamboyant/well designed stands get the most attention. My personal favourite was Darling which had a vintage dusky pink and gold theme along with fake hedges and butterfly lanterns:

Their clothes were pretty nice too! Check out the kimono style cover up with floral dress and pearl embellished knit with pleat detail dress:

              

I then stumbled upon LeJu which sells jewellery made from natural sources, embellished with gems:

(naked nails! – *gasp*)

I then found Orelia, which I recognised from seeing in Topshop. I love their gemstone necklaces which look like they’re tribal inspired:

And their letter necklaces are cute too!

What do you make of my boutique finds? Did you make it to Pure London?

I also visited Pure Spirit, which is aimed at a younger audience, which I will be blogging about tomorrow so stay tuned!

LDNshopaholic xxx

Jacques Open House

25 Jul

A quick post to let you know that Jacques Townhouse has opened it’s doors to everyone! Complimentary entry and open until Thursday, pop down for either 5.30pm or 7.30pm to be treated to the wonders of the Townhouse:

Once inside, you get treated to Jacques:

Manicures:

Makeovers:


Have your photo taken looking fabulous after visiting the ‘Wardrobe of Wonders’… A-maz-ing or what?!

Decorate cupcakes:

And generally have a whole lot of fun!! Take a few friends along and have a girly night getting dressed up and spoiling yourselves!

You can find the Townhouse at: Chandos House, 2 Queen Anne Street, London W1G 9LQ

I’d love to hear all about your visit, hopefully I’ll be heading down later in the week!

LDNshopaholic xxx

(Photos courtesy of Jacques)